Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Happy Spring. Now, get to work...

Happy first day of Spring, everyone. After a week and a half or so of springlike/verging on summer-like weather here, we've got sprinkles forecast for today.

But that's okay. I'm not going to get to go out today, anyway. I'll be sitting here, doing the same thing I've been doing the past couple of days, which is getting ready for practice interview day at CVP and writing the first draft of a workshop on job interviewing set to be presented early next month. Such fun.

And, well, yes, I am being sarcastic, but only because I'd like to have the time to get out and enjoy the weather - despite the predictions of a bit of rain, it's still nice enough to be out in the fresh air rather than just sitting here working and looking out the window at the building next door while I work.

I actually like putting together workshops. This is the third or fourth one I've participated in for CVP, and I'm finding that I'm half-way good at it. And, I did volunteer to write the draft, since writing is what I do. I'm not as good at interviewing, but in my time so far on the Interview Committee, I've learned quite a bit about the theory of job interviewing, from both sides - as interviewee and as an interviewer. I'm not sure that I completely approve of the psychology involved, but I understand it a lot more now than I did previously.

We will be covering a few aspects of preparing for interviews in this workshop, but the main emphasis is preparing to answer questions during the interview. After all, that is what happens in an interview.

And, I quite like that there is a storytelling aspect to answering certain questions, known as behavioral questions. These are questions that ask an interviewee about things that they have done as a part of their work in the past or asks the interviewee to explain how they would handle a certain scenario at work.

There is even a formula for answering such questions, called the STAR approach: in it, the person being interviewed explains the situation in question, defines the task posed by the situation, the action they took (or would take) in resolving the situation, and the results of the action or actions they took. Which is, when you think about it, a very efficient outline for a story.

Honestly, I don't like interviewing for jobs, but since there is really no way around the interview process in most cases, I figure that the next best thing to avoiding interviews is to get really good at them. Doing projects like this one is one way of getting good at them.

And on that note, I'd better get to it. I've still got a little bit of this draft to write before I can send it off to committee members for comment and revision. And I'm sure there are things that will need revision, if only because we've got a limited time (90 minutes) to present the workshop. The complication is that, because I am a great believer that a workshop should be a workshop - that the people attending the workshop should have to participate in something, rather than just sit there and listen to someone talk for an hour and a half - it's very difficult to plan the timing so that everything that needs to be covered will be covered adequately.

So, that's what I'll be doing today. How are you planning on celebrating the arrival of Spring?


Mary Hill said...

Hi, good luck on your interview. Loved STA will keep it in my notes for future reference.

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littlemissattitude said...

Thank you for coming by and reading, and for commenting, Mary. I'm looking forward to visiting your blog.